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Spirits Industry Update - July 12th

Posted by Evan Prish on

Highlight: Hard seltzer stays hot, White Claw not so much

2021 has seen a continuation of the increasing demand for hard seltzer, with the category posting double digit gains YTD. Leading the charge is Boston Beer’s Truly which is up 60% YTD, with E&J Gallo’s High Noon also seeing double digit gains YTD. However, one straggler has been White Claw – up a minimal .3% YTD. 

While White Claw was the first big player in the hard seltzer category, the brand is now suffering from a market that is becoming more saturated, with other big brands such as Bud Light and Corona also offering their own versions of the carbonated alcoholic beverage. 

Adjusted without White Claw, the hard seltzer category has grown over 130% YOY. Taking White Claw into account, the growth is just 5% YOY.

Currently, hard seltzer makes up 3.5% of the entire alcoholic beverage market. In a new report, Credit Suisse expects this to grow to 10% by 2025.

News Briefing:

Total Wine & More, the largest alcohol-specific retailer in the United States, opened their 216th store last week in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The company has retail stores in twenty-seven states around the country, with annual revenue exceeding $5 billion last year.

Jack Daniels has added ‘Tennessee Apple Fizz’ to its lineup of RTD (ready to drink) canned cocktails. Coming in at 7% ABV, Apple Fizz joins ‘Tennessee Whiskey & Cola’ and‘ Tennessee Whiskey, Honey and Lemonade’ in the Jack Daniels portfolio of RTD canned cocktails. Priced around $13 for a 4-pack, they are currently available in sixteen states, including California, New York, Pennsylvania, and Texas.

On June 24th, Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York announced that NY bars and restaurants will no longer be permitted to sell alcoholic beverages to-go. Known as ‘to-go cocktails’ some bars have estimated that during some weeks as much as 10% of their revenue has come from to-go cocktails. 

The move comes as sixteen of the thirty-nine states that allowed to-go cocktails during the pandemic have made permanent changes to their alcohol laws, allowing bars and restaurants to continue to sell alcoholic beverages to-go.

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